Interview with Appleby College Alum, Simi Ogunsola
Simi, an alumna of Appleby College, shared her appreciation of the enriching experiences the school offers. She highlighted the global exposure students receive, the leadership and initiative opportunities, and the vibrant community events that foster connections. Simi praises the school's nurturing environment, emphasizing that it encourages students to seize every available growth opportunity, fostering a lasting bond with the community.
Highlights from the interview
At Appleby College, I really appreciated the international community, and the way that it allowed us to be creative, the opportunities that they had for students to step up and decide how they wanted to do things. For the international community, I was a part of Round Square for a bit, which I loved. I hosted people at my house during a conference a couple of years ago.
At Appleby College, they not only create cool opportunities for students but they create opportunities where you can learn to create things for yourself. I know how to plan events and plan initiatives, because of the work that I did as a student ambassador. The leadership opportunities, and the opportunities to create things, initiatives, and events, and work with the team to bring your dream to fruition to actually see it through was amazing because there was leadership and there were people and teachers to guide us, but very much they just let us do our own thing and helped us out along the way.
I jumped at a whole bunch of leadership opportunities. When I got them, they taught me hard and soft skills that I can take now into my university clubs. I can lead a team now because of being a prefect; I feel the school has built me into someone who's able to create things of my own.
Students will go on a trip to another country, and just the opportunities to connect with schools and students all around the world and just gain so much knowledge through those experiences really, I think, built me as a person. The trips around the world, which used to be optional, made them part of the Appleby Diploma. I just think that international perspective and just learning about lives other than your own and situating yourself in a global context is so important. It expands your mind so much. Also, just having students from all over the world and having a boarding community does that as well.
On the point of events and engagement, I think we have so many beautiful celebrations of community. We have our walkathon and our homecoming and community weekend and closing day and things like that, where people are outside, they're in the community, they're enjoying the campus; I would say our events and our student engagement connect us.
Just seeing the way that Appleby keeps bringing people back and shows how much they care about you and value you really makes me feel valued and part of a community. It's just really nice. Teachers bring their families and parents come and things like that connect the students, I would say, but also just everyone in the Appleby community. When I was attending the school, I did feel like there was a great community around us and we had all those events and everything. But now that I'm out, I still get reached out to by the school. We still have events and I still get invited to things, and they still ask for my feedback on plans and future projects that they're working on for the kids in the school.
It's just the best place for them to grow; there's every opportunity; there's something for every interest. There's every chance that you could want. To parents considering Appleby, I’d say, because it's such a community, you will have help. There will be parents there who are in the same boat as you, who are thinking the same things, have the same reservations, and have the same hopes as you. And if you go in, they really will embrace you.
To Appleby students, I would say try everything. Don't hold yourself back from anything. The school is like a really fertilized, rich soil. It's just a really good place to grow up. Just not being afraid and grabbing this opportunity with both hands, and just doing as many things as possible, within reason, of course, because you also need to take time to rest.